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Tag Archives: Dear Diary

Dear Diary

Did you ever have one of those months where you had about a hundred things to write about, but you had no time to write about them? Yeah, that’s been me lately. So where do I begin? Just got back from the ACEP Scientific Assembly in Denver. Have another post about that later. So I’ll begin with the kids. Lots of birthdays in the house this time of year. My middle daughter happened to be born on the same day as I was. By far my best birthday gift ever. One of the things that was at the top of her birthday wish list was an Orbeez Soothing Spa. The web site says that Orbeez are “wet and wacky, soft and squishy, fun and funky, bouncy and beautiful.” In reality, it’s more like some marketing genius has convinced 10-12 year old little girls that they need to come home and relax in a spa-like foot bath after a hard day at school. Us? We walked uphill both ways to school in bare feet over shards of broken glass and nobody batted an eye. Now, every kid who watches afternoon cartoons needs a foot bath. So, despite my better judgment, we got her Orbeez for her birthday. To activate these things, they must be soaked in water first. Then they go from a little pebble the size of a BB to a large squishy ball the size of a marble. once activated, then kids can put their feet into a foot spa so that they can have soothing relief or from a hard day at school. The problem is first of all that once the kids find out that these things can be squished, then you find squished Orbeez all over the house. Stepping in one unexpectedly in one’s bare feet is not pleasant. Apparently, the dogs don’t think that they taste very pleasant, either. After a few days, an odor began to waft through the house. Did Mrs. WhiteCoat just express the dogs’ anal glands? No. Did someone pour anchovy juice on a used sweatsock? Nope. It was the Orbeez foot bath. These superabsorbent polymers apparently absorb more than water. Next year, I’m putting a loofah sponge and some moisturizer in an Orbeez box for her birthday present. Mrs. WhiteCoat also had a birthday at the end of last month. I was going to get her more perfume, but I was scared off by all of these women in lab coats chasing me through the store. Then I noticed … the stores already have Christmas decorations. That’s just un-American. I am not buying anything from a store that has Christmas decorations up before November 1. It’s just the principle of the matter. And if I see one Santa Claus looking all smiley at my kids before Thanksgiving, I am going to knee him in his jingle bells.

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Dear Diary

Not to interrupt the interesting discussion going about BirdStrike’s post regarding what a life is worth, but … Kids are all back to school. It was funny watching three of them enter new schools this year. The video of Junior WhiteCoat trying five times to open his locker then getting mad when dad did it on the first try was priceless. The video of Mrs. WhiteCoat crying when youngest daughter got on the school bus for the first time and waved to us through the window was also priceless. Speaking about crying … we went to see the movie “The Odd Life of Timothy Green“. Every one of the kids was bawling at the end. Apparently my kids weren’t the only ones. Critics seemed not to like the movie very much. I thought it was entertaining. Speaking about movies … all the WhiteCoat kids are getting little movie roles lately, but they all seem to be horror flicks. Junior is going to audition for another one today. Funny that middle daughter is starring in a horror movie but if she tries to watch one, she freaks out and can’t sleep for the next week. Even talking about the plot of a horror movie makes her sick. Speaking about getting sick … both dogs have some type of virus that the vet says is going around town. Vomit and diarrhea everywhere. Carpet cleaners must love it when this stuff happens. By the way, if a dog vomits on the floor, licks it up, runs away when you call her name, vomits on the floor again, then licks up a little bit of it before being scooped up and carried outside in mid-heave, then vomits the same material again in the grass, does that count as one episode or three episodes of vomiting? Mrs. WhiteCoat was upset because she thought I was letting the dogs eat their vomit. Initially, she was right. Why waste food, right? Then, after the second vomit, I realized that they would just walk around the house vomiting up the same food over and over again, leaving spots all over the carpet. That prompted a more urgent and concerted effort to get the dogs outside. Then how pitiful is it when the dogs stare at you with those sad eyes when you’re eating dinner and they get a small serving of chicken and mashed potatoes on their plate because their stomachs are upset? Not even any gravy? Here’s a sappy dog pic from before initiation of the exorcism. I’m just glad that whatever they have doesn’t get passed to humans. Speaking about Mrs. WhiteCoat getting upset … we took our four kids and a few of their friends to a water park for the end of summer. Half-price. Can’t beat it. So afterwards, we go out to eat at a family restaurant before making the trip home. A gentleman in suspenders staggered in the restaurant, and while passing our table on the way to the bathroom, stopped and in his garbled speech says to Mrs. WhiteCoat “Hey, you don’t look too bad for being an OctoMom!” I had to look away. She says “there are SEVEN children at the table and THREE of them do not belong to us.” Mr. Suspenders says “Well you still don’t look too bad” and he staggered off to the bathroom. My reminders that he was paying her a compliment and that “QuadraMom” just didn’t have the same ring were met with repeated evil stares. In between my trips to the emergency department to rule out sepsis every time I go running or ...

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Dear Diary

I’ve had an interesting couple of weeks. My trusty Palm Pre died on me after a good few years. When I brought it to the customer service center, the whippersnapper working there said “Whoa! That’s an old phone!” Thanks. Amazing how something that was so “cutting edge” a few years ago is now pretty much a piece of garbage. So I upgraded to the brand new Samsung Galaxy S3 and its Android tracking, er, um operating system. As soon as you activate the phone, you have to agree to allow a bunch of programs the ability to access your contact list, identity, phone calls, and location just to get the phone to work. You can’t remove the programs from your phone and you can’t limit their access. So then I researched a bunch of programs that would prevent other programs from accessing my information. And I installed a program that makes my GPS think I’m wherever I program it to be. Currently, I’m in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico. Overall, I have to admit that the phone is pretty nice. Screen is amazing. I can dictate text directly into the phone. Can do video chats with the kids. Can even control my computer at home from the screen on the phone. Kind of a learning curve on some of the programs, though. I’ll probably put up a few posts regarding my versions of the “best” Android programs to have on your phone. Speaking about phones, I saw someone pushing the envelope with cell phone etiquette at a restaurant recently. It’s not just that the person’s cell phone was turned on. It’s not that the cell phone was out on the table. The person actually brought a stand to set the cell phone on during dinner so that she didn’t miss that ever important text message (the picture was taken from across a restaurant, so don’t give me grief). Dogs are doing great. Had fun at the park the other day digging into the woodchips on the playground until someone yelled at me through the trees that they were “destroying” the playground. Destroying wood chips. Right. I was going to squat over one of the holes and smile at him, but figured that all that would do is get me arrested. Yes, I filled in the holes. I always fill in the holes. Went out with Mrs. WhiteCoat to a wine tasting event over the weekend. Had lots of fun and didn’t even purchase a bottle of wine. Met a guy who appeared intoxicated. We talked for a while and then he had to leave. He was driving. Offered to get him a cab, but he lived 40 miles away. Thought about calling the police, but then if he wasn’t drunk, I’d look like a jerk. Besides, he’d surely be gone by the time they got there and I had no idea what route he would be taking. So I watched him leave the event and wondered if I should have gotten physical with a stranger to keep him from driving. Then I wondered how I’d feel if he hit and killed someone. The whole situation bothered me the rest of the night. I got home and began brushing my teeth before bed. The toothpaste tasted funny. That was because it was my daughter’s facial moisturizer. Hey – it was dark and the tubes are almost exactly the same size. She’s lucky that she’s not grounded for … summer … for leaving that stuff in my drawer. For the past few days we’ve been dealing with another problem. The ...

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Dear Diary

[Exhale] The last few weeks have really been … busy. We’re down a doc at work, so I had to pick up a few shifts and my schedule was already overloaded to begin with. But that’s just the beginning. Had two graduations – oldest daughter from middle school and youngest daughter from kindergarten. Family was in from out of town. It was good to see everyone, although it is tough to see everyone getting older. Really enjoyed the company. Grandpa is kind of losing it, though. He’s cussing a lot more than he used to, which is funny to me, but shocking to the kids. OK, well, it’s kind of funny to the kids, too. He also gets confused at times. Was trying to put his sunglasses on before going out one afternoon but the neoprene sunglass holders kept getting caught on his ears so he turned the sunglasses and put them on sideways, then spun them so that the neoprene was covering his eyes. Then he couldn’t see and he got cussing so much that he got flustered. So he took the glasses off and tried it again … and he did the same exact thing. It became one of those events where your mind is telling you not to look, but your eyes can’t help it. Then he started cussing at me for laughing at him instead of helping him, which made me laugh even harder. Sorry, Gramps, the “guilt” gene is recessive in Irish people and that whole guilt thing wore off back in childhood. Didn’t work in high school, and it isn’t working now, either. But thanks for making me almost wet myself.

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Dear Diary

Two days later than I planned on posting. First of all, you all crack me up about the unemployment post. You can’t imagine all the e-mails I got about this. I’m not going anywhere. But it is nice to know that my ramblings are modestly interesting to more than a couple of people. The weekend was busy. I can now add the title “movie star” to my resume. Well, maybe not movie star, but I was a “featured extra” in one of the films that my son was in. He ended up going from a nice mild-mannered troublemaking kid to a zombie. I got to yell at him in the movie just like I do in real life. The only thing that sucks about being in a movie is that you sit around the set … a lot. Saturday was spent walking around the neighborhood, watching other cast members get progressively more intoxicated, and laughing when my son made faces at people swearing. At the same time that Junior was taping his movie, the daughters WhiteCoat were having pictures taken for their comp cards. Then I get a call from Mrs. Whitecoat. Kind of frantic. “Um, so we were outside taking pictures and a bug flew into Daughter WhiteCoat 3’s hair. I pulled it out and tossed it. Then I looked closer and there was another bug walking across her temple. So tell me … what do lice look like?” “Kind of like ants with a more elongated elliptical shape to the back part of the torso. No wings, though.” “Omigod. She has lice.” Then in the background I hear this loud “Bwwwwaaaaaaaaaaaaaah” and assorted other guttural noises from my daughter. “Does … this … mean … I’m going … to starve?” My wife tried to calm her down. “No, dear. You’ll get some medicine and you’ll be fine.” “Will my hair fall out?” “No, dear.” “Do I have to go to the hospital?” “No, dear. We’re going to have to give you intramuscular anxiolytics if you don’t relax, but we have access to the injectable form of those in mommy’s office.” “Whaaat?” “Nothing, dear. We’ll take care of it.” Getting rid of lice in the house is no small feat. We found out that WC Daughter #2 also had an infestation in her scalp. Combs. Lotions. Washing all the bed linens. Washing the clean clothes that were sitting on the bed. Rechecking the hair. Finding leftover bugs. Repeat combing. Every time your head itches, you want someone to look for bugs. I think we’re over that for now. Hopefully. Then WC Daughter #1 got called for a modeling shoot about 120 miles from home. Nice opportunity, so we accepted. I got home from work and checked over Mrs WC’s truck to get it ready for the trip. One of the tires looked low in air, so I unscrewed the cap to check the tire pressure. The cap was stuck. So I got a pair of pliers to unscrew the cap. Dumb move. Not only did the cap come off, but so did the valve stem. SSSSssssssssssssss The tire wasn’t flat before, but it was flat now. No problem. I’ll just put on the spare. Well the winch with the spare didn’t work. The damn spare tire was stuck under the truck. No place was open that late at night to fix it. They had to leave at 5AM to make it to the shoot, so I took all the stuff out of Mrs. WC’s truck and put it into my truck. Dog had a nightmare which woke us up ...

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Dear Diary

It’s been a long few weeks since I last wrote. I’m going to file this one under “serentipity.” My son’s wrestling season is over. He didn’t make the cutoff to qualify for states, but he still had a great season. There was something strange that happened as he prepared for the tournaments, though. In our region, there is one kid in my son’s weight class that is an excellent wrestler. He’s strong. He’s quick. He literally throws kids around the mat. He did an illegal slam on my son a couple of years ago and ever since, my son is scared to death of him. As we got closer to declaring weights for the regional tournaments, my son decided that he wanted to diet down to the next lower weight class so that he wouldn’t have to wrestle this kid. We discussed how everyone is beatable and how we can’t run away from our fears, but he wouldn’t listen. So for the week prior to the weigh-ins, he cut back on his food, ate popcorn and vegetables, and exercised a lot. The night of weigh-ins, he had almost lost the four pounds he needed. So he skipped rope in a sweatsuit for a half hour at the weigh-in site to sweat off the last six ounces. He weighed himself on the check-in scale and he was 2 ounces under the limit. Phew. Then he ran inside to have his official weigh-in. On that scale, he was two ounces OVER the limit. He lost it. He just burst out crying. His coach demanded that he be re-weighed. Same weight. He was going to do some more exercises, but once the official weight is declared, there are no changes. His coach demanded that he be weighed on the check scale. Everyone went back outside – he was still two ounces over. Junior was heartbroken. Not only would he have to wrestle this monster kid, but he would have to do so weaker than his usual. He worried all night. Didn’t get a lot of sleep. We got to the tournament the next day and found out that the monster kid cut weight and was in the bracket below my son. Those extra two ounces kept him out of monster kid’s bracket. I kept reciting the quote from “Kung Fu Panda” – “one often meets his destiny on the road he takes to avoid it.” My wife kept saying that an angel must have stepped on the scale. In the end, my son wound up placing fourth in regionals and sixth in sectionals. Monster kid won the state tournament in his weight division, leaving a path of destruction in his wake. My middle daughter got sick. Initially, it looked like she had influenza, but then she started complaining of back pain. Then she had a high fever. Then she got shaking chills. We checked her urine and it was full of WBCs and bacteria. By that time, she was vomiting. We tried to give her nausea medication and antibiotics, but she kept vomiting them. So Mrs. WhiteCoat got some IM antibiotics from her office to begin treatment. We drew up one dose and were ready to give it … then Mrs. WhiteCoat asked if I smelled anything funny. No, I have a cold. She thought the medication was bad. So she drove to her office and got another vial. I smelled it this time. Had an odor of used cat litter. Called pharmacy. Nope, shouldn’t have an odor. The following morning, called manufacturer. Nope, shouldn’t have an odor. Recalled the whole lot of ...

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